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Category: New Mexico

Silver City, New Mexico

Silver City, New Mexico

We stayed at Rose Valley RV Ranch in Silver City. We really liked this very rustic park at 5900′ elevation as well as the surrounding area near Silver City. We were located near the back in site #61 so we had wide open views of the surrounding mountains and trails behind us. There was a historic cemetery next door where Billy the Kid’s mother is buried.

The historic downtown area of Silver City has a lot of history and was a bit more upscale than what we found in Elephant Butte or Truth or Consequences. Western New Mexico University has a big campus here and no doubt contributes to helping the town thrive. The town has a artistic and eclectic vibe with lots of art workshops with over 20 galleries, boutiques, gift shops, restaurants, etc. We really enjoyed strolling these historic streets, seeing the sites, and sampling all the espresso shops!

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Elephant Butte, New Mexico

Elephant Butte, New Mexico

After spending some time in northern New Mexico around Christmas we decided we needed to move further south where it would hopefully be a bit warmer. We thought the Elephant Butte area looked pretty good and we were surprised we could get a month there on short notice. Elephant Butte got it’s name from a small Butte that is now in Elephant Butte Lake. After looking at it several times, we can see a slight resemblance to an Elephant head but we think you probably need to smoke something to get the full effect. You can see for yourself in the picture. You may also notice that the lake looks low. It’s only at 3% capacity. Drought and lack of snow in southern Colorado has taken its toll on the Rio Grande river that flows into the lake.

We really liked the Elephant Butte Lake RV Resort where we stayed for the month of January. We had a spacious deluxe site with a concrete pad for the RV and room for the truck beside it. It was nicely landscaped for a park in this area and had a lot of activities within the park particularly for longer stays. In looking around the area, we definitely picked the nicest park but we did find another one on the other side of town that deserves an honorable mention – Cedar Cove RV Park. If we come here again that might be an option as well.

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Capulin RV Park

Capulin RV Park

We stayed in Capulin RV Park for 2 weeks in December leaving the RV here while we drove to Colorado to spend a wonderful few days at Christmas with our kids and grandkids.

We arrived in Capulin a week before Christmas so we could experiment with how to operate in the extreme cold weather including finding ways to reduce our propane use so we wouldn’t run out while we were away in Colorado. Many days here started out with single digit temperatures, negative degree wind chill and rarely got above freezing for a high. It was just miserably cold weather but it offered a good opportunity to figure out how our RV works in this kind of weather.

Our camp hosts, Mark and Michelle, were extremely nice and kept the park very clean. They went out of their way to make sure we had everything we needed and were comfortable during our stay. We would definitely camp here again because of their hospitality and willingness to watch over our ‘home’ while we were away. However, the 21 mile drive each way to Raton and back for gas, propane, groceries, etc. made it a bit more remote than we would normally choose (especially since the highway was closed several times for ice and snow storms). We were so glad to leave the area and get back to a bit warmer weather further south.

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Cochiti Lake Recreation Area

Cochiti Lake Recreation Area

Rating:  
Location:  Cochiti (near Santa Fe), New Mexico
Site Quality:  Asphalt roads throughout the park with asphalt pull thru and back in spots with covered picnic tables. Each site also had a solar light near the picnc table – ours worked but some did not. These provided dim light at the site which was nice at night.
Type:  Corps of Engineers
Access:  North highway 25 and West of Santa Fe with good access for big rigs.
Staff: Friendly and helpful.
Amenities:  Showers and restrooms. Each site has a covered picnic table and grill.
Cellular/WiFi:  AT&T and Verizon 5 bars (Cell tower is in the park). AT&T was slow (<1Mb) while Verizon as very fast (~40Mb). No WiFi.
What we liked:  Quiet, peaceful atmosphere. Campsites are terraced above the lake providing good views of the lake and dam which is one of the 10 largest earthen dams in the world. Felt safe and secure. 50′ asphalt site was plenty big for a 41′ RV and the truck.
What we didn’t like:  Not much shade in most spots. No sewer hookups so you have to use one of two dump stations. The shower nearest our site was just OK but could have been updated and cleaned up. One of the control knobs was on the floor. One downside compared to RV parks in Santa Fe is that the temperatures here tend to be 5 to 10 degrees warmer. 

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Puye Cliff Dwellings

Puye Cliff Dwellings

The Puye Cliff Dwellings were home to 1,500 Pueblo Indians who lived, farmed and hunted game there from the 900s to 1580 AD. Puye Cliffs’ inhabitants then moved into the Rio Grande River valley due to drought. They became the ancestors of today’s Santa Clara people, who now live at Santa Clara Pueblo, 10 miles east of Puye.

Puye Cliffs comprises two levels of cliff and cave dwellings cut into the cliff face, as well as dwellings on the mesa top. Over one mile long, the first level runs the length of the base of the mesa. The second level is about 2,100 feet long. Paths and stairways were cut in the face of the rock to connect the two levels and allow people to climb to the top of the mesa.

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